Outdoor Ponds, Water Features and Water Gardens

Landscaping with fountains and ponds adds a sense of calm and character to a backyard.
By: Michele C Hollow

Ornamental Offerings

The large French limestone fountain offers a dramatic touch to balance the clean lines of the pool. The running water offers a peaceful sound, and pumps are used to re-circulate the water.

Water Sculpture

The soft sound of water falling from this single fountain masks other unwanted noise. This is placed in a backyard where the sun shines in the midday.

Cool Offerings

The sun beats down for most of the day in this backyard, and this trio of fountains gives the homeowners a bit of a reprieve from the intense heat.

Bubbling Boulder

A granite rock fountain bubbles just enough to create movement in this landscaped garden. The soft-blue grape hyacinths and white starflowers add contrast to the boulder and red bricks.

Garden Gazebo

A multilevel stream washes down from the gazebo, appearing as a miniature lock for toy boats. The gazebo blends into the background of the landscape using colors from nature. The brick that edges the water feature is repeated at the base of the gazebo.

Great for Small and Large Gardens

The Aquafires Stainless Steel Tier Five Fountain from Wayfair fits in gardens of all sizes. The effect of the water flowing from cup to cup and then disappearing is pleasing to watch.

Making an Entrance During the Day

Visitors often let out an impressive sigh of desire when they encounter the front yard of this Morristown, N.J., mansion. Land Identity, LLC, incorporated a seven-foot-in-diameter, formal-style fountain surrounded by flowering annuals and inlay brick. Click to the next slide to see how the fountain looks at night.

Making an Entrance at Night

The five illuminated jets make the fountain come alive at night. This was a collaborative effort involving Land Identity as the landscape architect; Crystal Pool & Spa as the pool contractor; and Curb Appeal Design, which handled the stonework around the fountain and throughout the garden as well as lighting and landscaping.

Dramatic Nights and Lights

The natural colors of the night sky combined with colored lighting strategically placed along the footbridges and walkways add flair to this backyard water garden. Click through to the next slide to see this backyard in daylight. Design by Atlantis Water

Water Flows Along the Walkways

The garden consists of several varieties of marginal aquatic plants, both tropical and hardy. The tropical plants help provide vibrancy and variety. Maintenance simply requires removing dead foliage so it doesn't fall into the ponds. Design by Atlantis Water

Above-Ground Water Garden

Designer Tiffany Angeles created this garden with three fountains in her backyard. Using no tools, Angeles stacked 10" x 10" flat bricks, which she purchased from a home improvement store, above ground for a shallow pond and ordered a loose liner, which she cut to fit the pond. She held the liner down with more bricks. Like most ponds, this pond needs to be cleaned about once every three months. Cleaning involves removing algae from the pumps and using a net to scoop debris from the bottom of the pond.

Nature’s Elements

This boulder with a bamboo spigot was installed in a low-water garden in California. This design brings sound and a moving element to the garden. Re-circulating features are great because they are low in cost and don’t waste money. Also, with moving water, you don’t have to worry about mosquitoes.

Looks Like It’s Always Been There

This fountain is deceptive because it looks like it was custom-designed for this Spanish Mediterranean home, and has been part of the yard for years. It’s actually a prefabricated modular unit that was installed in a brightly colored courtyard. The homeowner wanted the sound of water in the yard, but not the expense of a custom fountain.

Falling Water

Lazar Landscape created this modern waterfall to bring a sculptural element into the garden. It can be viewed from the main level of the house, which is a flight above the garden.

Reflections and Play

This large water garden is on a down slope from the house. It has a reflecting pond that pulls your eye into the garden from the upper decks of the home. Lazar Landscape designed the runnel so it has the sounds of water without disturbing the calm, flat reflecting pond. Seat walls divide the two spaces. As an unexpected side benefit, the homeowners can dip their feet in the pond with their grandchildren on hot summer days.

Garden Art

Powered by the sun, place the Sutherland Solar Waterfall with Planter from Wayfair in a sunny spot and relax to the comforting sight and sound of your very own waterfall.